Comments on Somaliland's electionsSOMALILANDNET, (POSTED ON 24 APRIL 2003)
Election Messages: Message from an American to Somaliland
I am an american citizen who only recently heard of the existence of your country, and I was pleased to hear of your elections. Then, when the results were anounced and I heard of the challenge by the opposition candidate Ahmed Mohamed Silanyo. It rminded me of an event from America's history.
Our first President, George Washington, was extremely popular, but refused to serve more than two terms. His vice president, John Adams, became president after him. John Adams had participated in the declaration of independence of the United States, and so was a great patriot. But he lost his re-election campaign to Thomas Jefferson, a man who wanted to undo many of John Adams' actions while president, by only a few votes. Adams hated Jeferson, and he was sure that Jefferson would ruin the country, but Adams accepted the loss, and placed his hopes on democracy and on the people of the United States. Today, we in the United States take peaceful transfers of power for granted, but John Adams could easily have nullified the election and declared himself president for another term. In many ways, we owe our present democracy to the bravery of John Adams, who was willing to accept defeat.
Perhaps Mr. Silayo should accept his defeat, however controversial it may be, because in the long run, it will be good for Somaliland to have a stable government and fair elections. I do not know whether there really was any tampering in the election (Thomas Jefferson was accused of that, too) but I do know that maybe, in two hundred years, a child in the Republic of Somaliland can have democracy if every side would just be willing to accept the results, however close they may be. READ MORE